We have seen so much change in recent years. The world has rapidly shifted towards digital, and Industry 4.0 is sweeping across value chains of most if not all economic sectors. The age of PR (or Public Relations) 4.0 has arrived together with the massive shift to digital and social. PR4.0 is more than just about switching to digital and social platforms or changing long-form articles to videos and infographics.
Perhaps in past decades, when mass media management became a major feature of PR, many had forgotten a fundamental art of PR – we must earn the right for our stories to be shared by stakeholders. After all, the most talked about stories in the past were those who were organically shared by people to their friends and family. For this to happen, we must focus on earning the trust of audiences and stakeholders.
Consumers and stakeholders are now consuming content with an expectation of not just listening, observing, and understanding messages. They expect to have a stake in the news and information sharing process. We are all familiar with the number of memes and reaction videos created by social media users, re-imagining and expressing their own perspectives of the stories they are being told.
This convergence and co-creation have created what we could term “co-active.” This is when audiences are empowered to co-create content and be part of the conversations, sharing their views through the multiple platforms that are available to them.
As I shared on this week’s episode of PRGN Presents, we are at the beginning of this wave and navigating through the challenges will not be easy. Clearly, we can see the shift in consumer and brand narratives. “Purpose” is now becoming the new product and “green” is becoming the next digital. Companies are not just talking about profit. The focus has now shifted towards ESG (Environment, Social and Governance) and how businesses can be “sustainable.” We will also see many other significant changes and disruptions coming our way, such as the Metaverse, AI, etc. The effort needed to build relationships with our publics in the era of PR4.0 will certainly be complex but that is what makes the future so exciting!
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